lifestyle

How to Stop Worrying On A Late Night Out

In the “Wild West” of college partying, there are many risks to take into account. Sure, there are the normal ones such as drinking too much or spending all of your money at the club, but my least favorite is losing someone late at night. I’m fortunate enough to have some friends who are girls (that’s right, actual platonic girlfriends) that I sometimes go out with, and it’s a huge drag on a great night when we realize someone is lost and they’re not answering their phone. We have to halt the festivities, get in touch with everyone, and confirm that the person is alive and safe. That’s why I was very relieved when I saw this article about a new service called Kitestring. Kitestring is designed to check in on you at predetermined times of the night, and messages your emergency contacts if it receives no response. The interface is easy to manage, and it can easily be turned off or pushed back with a simple text if you’re busy.  While it might not necessarily keep you out of trouble, it at the very least can be a reassurance (or warning) to your worried friends. That way, you’ll hopefully end up like this: Source: giphy.com And not like this: Source: giphy.com So stay safe, and have fun tonight, and don’t forget to study...

Why Being a Patient in the Hospital is Awesome

Being admitted to the hospital generally means that there’s a problem with your health. But that doesn’t mean that you have to be a pessimist about your ailments! Here are six reasons why staying in a hospital is one sweet deal. 1. Breakfast in bed. All the time. Mmmm, tasty hospital food! 2. For men, hot nurses As the famous Animaniacs once said…. hello, nurse! 3. For women, your chances of landing a sexy, rich doctor-husband are exponentially higher! Aim high, ladies! 4. Drugs…yay!* (The Almost Doctor’s Channel does not endorse the inappropriate or illegal use of any drugs) Hey, modern pharmaceutical innovations, right? 5. Those cool bracelets You Can’t Wait to Show Off to Your Friends (Applicable Until 8th Grade) A surefire way to say, “I did more things than you today, and here’s proof.” 6. It’s like your birthday every day—everyone’s nice to you, people come visit with cards, flowers, and presents, and you get to be the center of attention! Nothing better than being in the spotlight!   Anyway, next time you’re in the hospital, stay optimistic and keep your head held high! Unless you’re in a neckbrace, in which case keep it right where it...

Think Med School Is Pricey? How About This Man’s “Medical Procedure”

It’s no secret that we live in an interesting time, but it seems some people like to take popular fads to the extreme. Here, we have one of those cases. Joel Miggler, a 23-year-old German man has been feeding his obsession with body modification since the age of 13, including several holes large enough to put your fingers through (I’m sure his dentist has no problem finding his way around through the gaping holes in his cheeks). Apparently, Miggler said his “experiments” didn’t hurt, and when asked what the inspiration behind his interesting ventures was, he replied nonchalantly, saying, “I just enjoy playing with my body and blood.” Well, if it didn’t hurt physically, it sure did hurt the old savings account. Since embarking on his “holey mission,” Miggler has spent a reported $6,800 on his various procedures–roughly the same cost of a medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1969. Talk about money…well spent? Featured image from The Huffington Post | Caters News...

Think Medical School is For You? You Might Be Right.

Over the weekend, there was a minor uproar on Twitter surrounding an article published in The Globe and Mail titled “Think medical school is for you? You’re probably wrong.” Sounds harsh right? The rest of the piece continued in much the same vein and spawned several rebuttal articles from physicians and medical students arguing against the author’s thesis, which hypothesized that the burnout rate among young doctors is a result of what got them into medical school in the first place: their perfectionism, their impressive laundry list of qualifications and the fact that they are, as yet, unacquainted with failure. Katherine Sinclair writes about individuals who, when asked why they want to be doctors, invariably parrot the ideal of wanting to help others, but secretly hold less altruistic motives at heart. They are driven by power, money, security, and the success that has courted them all throughout their life. When faced with the realities of medical school, the sensation of being a big fish in a huge pond, surrounded by other, much bigger fish, these students falter. An average exam mark or two later and their sense of well-being is degraded. By the time they are awarded their coveted MD and begin to realize the thanklessness of the job, the long-hours, the impossibility of saving everyone, they break. These gifted students who follow medicine because they believe it’s just...

A Call to Almost Docs: The Future is Yours for the Making

In case you haven’t noticed, we are in a time of great change in medicine. The implementation of the Affordable Care Act, while perhaps not ideal, accompanies a conversation in our nation about improving healthcare access and affordability to make our country a healthier place. More and more research papers are published every day as we seek to understand the world around us and use that knowledge to improve the way we prevent, diagnose, and treat disease. Health disparities and cultural differences are acknowledged as we try to make healthcare better for all. Advocates are vying for policy change at a national level. Outreach is being done to other countries to bring them ideas and medicines they may not have had. Yet, despite all of this effort, we have a long, long way to go. With financial, cultural, social, and other barriers hindering change, the problems we face today may be problems that we will face for quite some time. If we look at those in medicine who are involved in this change, whom do we see? We see physicians who have played the role of doctor for quite some time, who know the healthcare system and who have been striving to enact change for many years. We see primary investigators who are leading research and have had the longevity in their careers to establish themselves and promote their...

These People are Just Doing Their Jobs, But Here’s Why I’m Thankful They’re Good at It

6:20 PM “Ok everyone. We’ve got eyes. Sir, my name is Dr. Hanger. Can you hear me? You were in an accident earlier today and you are in the ER right now. We’re gonna take good care of you. Just stay with us, ok?” That is undoubtedly something no one wants to hear when they open their eyes. I struggled to remember how I had ended up in the ER when I should have taken bus 71B and headed straight home to finish my long-overdue calculus homework. It took a moment for me to recall the details, but it all finally came rushing back to me.   5:00 PM “That physiology exam…I wonder if the professor just likes to torture us for fun,” I thought to myself as I walked out of the exam room. It was sunny out today. I could see everyone sitting in the lawn, relaxing under the shade of the sun that had appeared after countless months, and all I could think about was how I had just screwed up on my test. “If this is undergrad, med school’s going to be a treat.” I just kept on walking, approaching the intersection on Fifth and Bigelow. I was distracted, thinking about my plummeting grade in physiology class, when I was swept off my feet (literally) and thrown to the ground 10 feet away from the...

How Physically Altering Your Brain May Be the Panacea to Medical School Success

Medical school is a stressful time, one of intense study, divided attention, and extreme mental demands.  As a brand new third year student, I can feel my attention being tugged in many directions.  On any given day I have lectures to prepare for, cases to read about, labs to check, patients to see, reading assignments, etc.  It’s hard to say if it’s more material than the previous two years of school, but it is definitely more diverse in nature. Naturally I am interested in anything that increases my mental abilities.  Many students, myself included, turn to energy drinks and coffee for those days we can’t get it together.  But a recent body of research suggests there may be a better alternative to mega doses of caffeine.  Mindfulness training and meditation, something that has been known to Eastern cultures for centuries, has slowly migrated its way into Western society and has been the subject of a wealth of literature over the past decade. A study published last year in Psychological Science demonstrated that just two-weeks of mindfulness training improved undergraduate reading comprehension and focus.  Another study looked at incorporating mindfulness training into a semester of classes for undergraduate students.  This, too, demonstrated improvements in attention.  A review of the literature suggests that there are numerous studies correlating mindfulness mediation training with increased attention and enhanced working memory So how does...